Hello! Have you been waiting on the edge of your seat this morning … just wondering who the next teacher to be featured will be?? Well, wait no more - today’s Special Teacher is Donna Mishra, Lead Teacher at Prairie View Montessori in North Aurora. Ms. Donna was nominated by fellow mom and friend Amy Baugh. Amy has many years of experience with Prairie View as all four of her boys started out going there. In Amy’s words, “Miss Donna gets to know each child individually and tailors their learning to match. She pushes the kids to always do their best and keeps them all challenged, in a gentle way. She has created such a peaceful, loving, inclusive environment where kids can really thrive. I trusted Miss Donna with all of my kids, and I’m so glad I did. They are all thriving today, and that started with a strong foundation from their years at PVM with Miss Donna.”
Welcome, Donna! In her own words:
1. How long have you been teaching? I started working as a teacher in a Montessori setting in 1996. So, it’s more than 23 years I have been working with pre-school and kindergarten aged children. I am the Director and a Lead Teacher at Prairie View Montessori in Aurora since 2003.
2. Why did you want to be a teacher? Since childhood, I always enjoyed being with kids. Interestingly, little kids reciprocated a similar affinity. Working with little kids is my passion and I never feel tired working with kids. Never thought that I could be a teacher, but it came natural to me.
3. What do you love most about teaching? Or how rewarding is it? For me, it’s always a refreshing and peaceful time while I am with kids. To me, it feels like a divine presence with the kids; so innocent and yet so dynamic and vibrant with an excitement to learn. Deep inside, I feel like witness watching the blooming of a bud into a flower with infinite potential.
I feel blessed to be a part of every child and help them develop confidence and excitement to learn as they grow. I sincerely believe that genuine education is about the joys of discovery and the deep satisfaction of realizing one’s potential.
I loved the style and philosophy of Dr. Maria Montessori and decided to be a Montessori teacher. The most touching is the fact that: “education is not about memorizing answers, but about devising questions and developing the courage to ask them”. It is questioning that helps one understand and not otherwise. It’s like the satisfaction of quenching one’s thirst and not otherwise.
I believe teaching is highly rewarding. When one of the students from the 1st kindergarten batch came to inform us that he was going to Cornell and the family felt grateful for doing his Kindergarten at Prairie View Montessori, I felt all the hard work had been rewarded. Every child is precious and has infinite potential. Helping them at a tender age is privilege, that a teacher gets.
4. What is the hardest part about being a teacher? Being with little kids has never troubled me. Sometimes, it is a challenge to explain to parents, the importance and benefits of the Montessori philosophy.
5. A little about yourself – where are you from? Are you married with children? Do you have pets? I was born in India and came to the US in 1995 after marriage. My father was a psychiatrist who passed away while helping people during a catastrophic flood situation. I have an older brother in Canada and a younger sister in India. My mother lives in India.
I have a master’s degree in Early Childhood and a Montessori training to teach preschool and kindergarten kids. My husband is an engineer by profession and we have 2 kids. My son is a senior, working towards an undergraduate degree in Statistics and my daughter is a sophomore, studying to be an early childhood teacher.
6. What do you like to do for fun? I love singing, walking, travelling, family get-togethers and watching old family videos and pictures.
7. What is one unique thing about you that kids might think is funny? Kids are keen observers and they notice minor changes very quickly. As I am with them almost all day, I sometimes act like them and they love it. Sometimes, they imitate me at home.
YAY for Mrs. Donna. And thank you for the very important work that you do.
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